PICS: What your favourite international tourist sites look like now
When covid-19 spread across the world in mere months, none of us could have predicted the impact it would have on travel.
Just three months since being detected in China, the virus has crippled some of the world's famous tourist destinations, shutting down many landmark attractions in the process. Many countries are in lockdown, and people have to #stayhome in hopes of curbing the spread of the virus.
Here are some of the international attractions that have been affected:
Eiffel Tower, France
Many visit Paris to see the Eiffel Tower. However, due to the rising covid-19 outbreaks in Europe, the attraction temporarily closed from March 13, 2020. It's unclear when it will reopen considering that France Prime Minister Edouard Philippe extended the lockdown until April 15.
Eiffel Tower informed travellers on its website: "In the context of the covid-19 outbreak and the latest government health measures, the Eiffel Tower is closed from March 13, for an indefinite period of time."
E-tickets purchased on the Eiffel Tower website will be refunded.
Those who purchased it from a reseller were encouraged to contact the reseller's after-sales service.
Machu Picchu, Peru
Hailed as one of the New Wonders of the World, Machu Picchu is among the most respected places on Earth.Machu Picchu is an Incan citadel set high in the Andes Mountains in Peru, above the Urubamba River valley. The attraction dates back to the 15th century. The attraction closed as part of Peru's State of Emergency declared on March 15 until April 12, 2020.
Taj Mahal, India
The Taj Mahal is an ivory-white marble mausoleum on the south bank of the Yamuna river in Agra. Travellers from all corners of the globe travel to this iconic site.
Taj Mahal was commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan, to house the tomb of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal. The attraction that receives thousands of guests daily closed in March.
This is not the first time the Indian landmark closed down due to unforeseen circumstance. IANS reported that the attraction closed for more than a week during the 1971 war with Pakistan. It also closed for a few days during a flood in 1978. India's lockdown ends on April 15. However, it could extend if the situation does not improve.
New York, US
New York's tourism hit a slump since the covid-19 outbreak as many travellers have ditched their plans to visit the famous city. Various tourist sites like the Statue of Liberty temporarily closed down.
Liberyellisfoundation.org revealed on its website: "Liberty and Ellis Island are currently closed to the public, but Foundation staff continue to work remotely and safely. We are constantly monitoring this evolving situation and the Foundation will be in compliance with any government mandates regarding our operations."
Time Square, a major commercial intersection in New York City, once one of the liveliest places in the Big Apple, has become somewhat of a ghost town.
Colosseum and Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy
Italy is one of the European countries severely impacted by the coronavirus. As Italy remains a high-risk country for travellers, all of its attractions, including the Colosseum and Leaning Tower of Pisa, has closed down. Other attractions affected include Vatican Museums, Pantheon and Pompeii. The country remains in lockdown.
Mecca, Saudi Arabia
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Thousands of Muslims travel to Mecca annually as part of Hajj (pilgrimage). However, Saudi Arabia announced it stopped pilgrims from Mecca, home to the cube-shaped Kaaba and also the holy city of Medina in late February. It's unclear when trips will resume.
London Eye, United Kingdom
The London Eye or the Millennium Wheel, a cantilevered observation wheel on the South Bank of the River Thames in London, is one of the most photographed attractions in London. The attraction closed from March 20 until further notice.
London Eye revealed on its website that it decided to protect the health and wellbeing of their guests and team, which was their top priority.
The UK is currently in lockdown. All its attractions are closed.